Kelly Ripa Thanks Retiring Regis Philbin For 'Wonderful Moments': [ send to a friend ]
Philbin announced on Tuesday that he would be retiring from the show sometime around the end of the summer, after 28 years on the job.
"While I realize that nothing is forever, still I had always hoped there would be an exception," Ripa says. "I can't overstate what Regis has brought to the table."
"His chair might soon be empty but the wonderful moments I have experienced with him over the past 10 years will always make him a meaningful part of my life."
'Live' executive producer Michael Gelman adds he hates to see Regis go but he definitely understands it's time at 79.
"Not only is he a broadcast legend, he's been my friend, mentor and coworker for 28 years," says Gelman. "I understand how after his 50-plus years in front of the camera, waking up early day after day, he's ready to step back from the daily grind. We'll all miss him. There's no one like Regis."
Meanwhile, former co-host Kathie Lee jokes while she doubts Regis will be away from television for long, she wishes him the best.
"Although he'll never retire," Gifford says, "I think his most enjoyable days are ahead of him and I hope to be a part of them."